Pokhara – Nayapul – Kyumi
Our hotel organised a taxi for us to be picked up at 9am and take us to Nayapul. Most people take a jeep from there to Birethanti, but we chose to walk the stretch instead. Just when we thought that we were lost, we realised we were already in Kyumi.
The first night we spent at Bright Guest House, and made a friend – 9 year old Krittika who speaks excellent English and goes to boarding school in Pokhara.
Kyumi – Jhinu
This day was pretty hard as you walk up mountain steps for most of the day. It was a bit discouraging to find out that after walking for 5 hours, we had only completed 5km. Still, the surroundings are so beautiful that we were fine with taking it slow.
Still we reached Jhinu just before it rained and spent the night talking football with two Argentinian trekkers. One thing we noticed pretty soon is that the teahouses are like hostels, you end up meeting and talking to a lot of people who are more than happy to share tips about the trek or travelling other countries in general. Actually, thinking of it this was one of my favorite parts of the trek.
Jhinu – Chomrrong
Climbing even more steps this day, it was amazing to find out that there was a treahouse at the top that served chocolate cake. Chomrrong Cottange is the place to be, and they have amazing pizzas (!) too.
Once you get up, you actually start descending towards a bridge that needs to be crossed before ascending towards Sinuwa. Right before reaching the bridge I fell over and messed up my ankle. I knew this would happen, so brought a LOT of painkillers etc and with a few of Mat’s reiki sessions, I was ready to continue the walk next day.
Chomrrong – Bamboo
This is where things get basic. Your’re leaving the villages behind and venture into a bamboo forest. Really beautiful settings and the path is constantly changing from here on.
This is also where it gets COLD. I was always a shit Norwegian and absolutely hate being cold, so would advise everyone to bring some good woolies for this part of the trek as it’s hot during the day, but freezing in the night. Bamboo is also where some people might start experiencing some signs of altitude sickness. There are pills you can take for this, but to be honest we found the side effects a bit OTT and chose to go without. If you listen to your body and make sure you stay well hydrated you should be fine. We brought electrolyte pacs and shared a liter of the mixture every day.
Bamboo – Macchapuchhare Base Camp
We set out early in the morning for the final leg of the trek. This part is really beautiful and it wasn’t actually until we reached the snowy valley right underneath Macchapuchhare mountain that I realised what we’ve actually ventured out on.
There are a few avalanches here, so listen to local advice and try not to cross them alone. Trekkers do sometimes disappear in the mountains, so have respect for the natural forces.
We reached MBC early afternoon and were really happy to see Nina & Ola, the Swedish couple we’ve been spotting along the way in our teahouse. Just as we walked in, it started to snow & hail and it was great to finally be inside.
MBC is a strange place, it feels totally crazy to be this close to the top of the mountain you can see all the way from Pokhara. Some people even felt a bit claustrophobic as you feel as though you’re standing in a mountain amphitheatre. Pretty stunning views and totally worth the walk up.
Most people spend the night at MBC, then continue to Annapurna Base Camp at dawn, in order to be there at sunrise. In the morning I felt terrible, dealing with altitude sickness and a cold so I never went the last couple kms, Mat, Nina & Ola made it though.
Mat’s dad had a life wish to go to Nepal, so we made sure a part of him joined us in the mountains.
The trip down, went pretty fast. Mostly because we took a route where you can get a jeep from about half the way. Still to get there, you have to cross a few dodgy bridges – a great metaphor for life!
It felt awesome to have completed the trek and spent some time in the Nepalese sacred mountains. You really get close to the people here.
And see some pretty crazy things. Like how they transport chickens up to the areas where meat is allowed.
It’s taken me ages to type this up, mainly cause we’ve been in Bali for the past two months and I’ve been busy with scuba, free diving, tanning and having a general great time. We found it quite hard to get good information on the trek before we went, do get in touch if you have any questions
After a month of hitting the giant reset button in Rishikesh, it was time to move on. Once again we packed our backpaks and took the early morning train from Haridwar to Delhi, from where we flew to Kathmandu. We got our 30 day visa on arrival and headed for the taxi stand, where the first person we meet is a retired Nepalese UN soldier who served in Bosnia. A bit of an odd coincidence, at least this guy gave us a fair(ish) price in to the city.
A typical day in Rishikesh would consist of getting up around 7am (no alcohol available and going to bed at 10pm does that to you). After a quick coffee in our room – I bought a Press coffee maker in Kochi which I guard with my life. You can take a girl out of the Balkans, but don’t mess with her coffee – Then Mat normally goes for breakfast at the Divine Ganga and satsang with Mooji. Read More «Yoga, Mantras and Malas»
“Auroville is a universal township in the making for a population of up to 50,000 people from around the world. The concept of Auroville – an ideal township devoted to an experiment in human unity – came to the Mother as early as the 1930s. In the mid 1960s the Sri Aurobindo Society in Pondicherry proposed to Her that such a township should be started. She gave her blessings. The concept was then put before the Govt. of India, who gave their backing and took it to the General Assembly of UNESCO. Read More «From Auroville to Rishikesh»
Sri Lanka, called Ceylon up until the 70ties, has a history that spans over 3000 years. It is mentioned in an ancient script – the Ramayana how Ravana, the king of Lanka abducted the beautiful Sita, the wife of Rama, an avatar of Vishnu. Hanuman, the monkey God, who could fly because his father was the wind went to Lanka and found Sita. It is then believed that he created the group of islands between Sri Lanka and India in order to enable Rama and the monkey army to cross the sea and save Sita.
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Apart form chilling our in the cafes in Fort Cochi, there are loads of other activities you can do, the first thing Monique organised for us was a boat trip on the backwaters. This is when we realised that tourist group trips really are not for us and the next time they tell us – the bus will pick you up, will be when we politely decline the offer. The trip was great, but our group was a bit crowded. Still, we went for the punting option and it is a much better ride than a motor boat and you get to take in the surroundings a bit more. The trip ended with a small boat ride, that only fits seven people. If we were to do this again, I’d gone for the small boat ride only.
Read More «Kerala Cruising»
We arrived to Fort Cochin with intentions to stay two nights, but ended up staying six. This place is so great that we didn’t want to leave. Cochin is basically a group of islands separated by channels where the backwaters run into the sea. We’ve been told it is the commercial capital of Kerala (Thivandrum being the official capital). Kerala, or as they call it here “God’s own land” is awesome, it is the first publicly voted communist state in the world and they still pretty much follow this rule today. Seeing the red communist flags on most street corners, somehow instantly made the yugonostalgic in me feel at home. The scenery is scattered with backwater channels, making the state green and lush with birds and wild animals.
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After spending 10 days lounging on the beach in Goa, we went to Mysore. To get there we took the overnight train to Bangalore where we waited a few hours then another train to Mysore, a mid sized city in Karnataka state. These trains are definitely unique, as my good friend Saso would say “I’ve seen better conditions in Norwegian prisons” – pretty much sums up the experience.
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Nina took the flight better than I expected and few movies later we arrived in Mumbai. One useful tip is not to ever leave the airport to get to a domestic airport. You can’t get back in and the shuttle bus takes you through the airport. You realize just how big it is, with shacks appearing up next to the airport. This is it!
Namaste friends! We have now been in Goa for 8 days and really loving it so far.
It’s almost a month ago that we left London, our flat and jobs to follow our dream of travelling the world for a year. We spent xmas and NYE with family & friends in Norway, where we had an amazing time and ate like little piggies. Was so good to see everyone! Then left for India January 10th.
These are the apps we downloaded, gearing up for our journey. In this day and age, it comes in handy, not 5to say we will use them all. Some will argue that there is a loss of spontainity now that travel industry has gone digital. But why be unprepapred? Why not leave more time to absorb the enviroment rather than sweat trying to buy a train ticket. These are all android apps but it should exist for iOS.
Easier said than done, after months of research here is my list of the things I’m taking.
Read More «What I’ve packed»
Our bucket list of counties so far. Divided into months, planned to cover the best time to travel. Sunshine here we come!